For those who do a lot of travelling, you should be well aware that there are certain things that you should and should not do while at the airport…
What Not to Do…
No matter how tired you are, you should always try to avoid sleeping (unless you are with someone where you two can trade off nap times). When alone, you can fool yourself into thinking that you will just “close your eyes for a bit” but, next thing you know its 8 hours later and you’ve missed your flight. Try to resist the urge to sleep at least until you have safely boarded the plane.
- Try to be Funny
There is always a time and a place for everything and one time and place not to be funny is at the airport, given all the issues surrounding terrorism. While the person may laugh or smile, you may find yourself being unnecessarily detained by the authorities. Also avoid using words such as bomb, explode or bang. Additionally, avoid wearing clothes that are supposed to be funny such as World’s #1 terrorist. See for yourself what happened on a deleted scene of “Friends” when Chandler tries to joke at the airport.
- Wear Sunglasses Inside
Similar to the above, this might give security the wrong idea that you might be trying to conceal your identity for some reason. Again, this may cause you to be unnecessarily detained and miss your flight.
- Argue with Staff
It is inadvisable to lose your temper in an airport. Firstly for you, as you may draw unnecessary attention to yourself and secondly for the staff member who is most likely just doing their job and following protocol, especially in cases where they have no control such as flight delays.
- Cut the line
Be considerate to other passengers and simply wait your turn to board the plane. Remember, with everyone having assigned seats, it really does not matter if you board first or last, so just be patient and wait your turn.
- Linger at the Gate
Lingering at the gate before your flight is called will not make you get on the flight faster as it may cause unnecessary crowding of the gate. Sit down and relax until your flight is called. Remember, the flight won’t leave without you (unless they have paged you several times without a response).
- Get Drunk
This may seem like a no brainer, but with long waits for boarding and flight delays, it happens more regularly than you would think. There is no harm in having a drink or two, but try not to overdo it as it will only make the day worse since you will not be allowed to board if you are visibly intoxicated. Also, you need to be 100% alert and there is less chance of this if you are inebriated.
What To Do…
- Check-In Early
This is especially important when you expect the flight to be extremely full. If you arrive at the airport well above your scheduled check in time, there is no harm in beating the rush and getting your check in out of the way early. This is especially advisable if you have concerns over a bag that may be overweight, as checking in early can help you solve this and other potential issues that may arise in a relatively hassle free manner.
- Pre-Weigh Bags Before Check In
If you suspect that the bag you want to check in might be overweight, it might be best to weigh it before you check in to avoid any scrutiny from fellow travelers and the travel agent. It will also help you decide what to remove from your bag if it turns out to be overweight, away from the prying eyes of fellow travelers.
- Pick up some last minute items/Window Shop
If you are early and have a few hours to kill, a little shopping can make the time go much faster. While you should be mindful that shopping at airports tends to be more expensive than at a regular store, you can still get some reasonably priced last minute items including souvenirs. If things are too expensive, simply pass the time by window shopping.
- Relax and Enjoy the Free Wi-Fi
Catch up on the latest on social media, or watch an episode of your favourite show, while waiting for your flight to be called. Browsing the internet (doing interesting stuff) is a fun and interesting way to help you pass the time while waiting for your flight.
- Read A Book
In most instances, Wi-Fi is only free for a period of time, so, if you have finished browsing the stores and exceeded your Wi-Fi limit, you can always sit and read a book. Remember, it is important to do anything you can to stay awake so that you are alert at all times, so make sure the book is a good read.
- Write a Bucket List
What should you do when you have nothing to do? Write a list of all that you would like to do, see and experience. Whether you are on a long 6 hour layover, or waiting a few hours until boarding time, there is no better time to write a bucket list of all you wish to accomplish than when your mind is reflecting on all the things you could be doing instead of sitting in an airport waiting for your flight to be called.
- Connect with others
Take the time while at the airport to have a conversation with some fellow passengers and travelers. You never know who you may meet at the airport. You may bump into someone who lives in your country, or you may even get exposed to different cultures by interacting with persons of different nationalities. Chances are, these people are just a bored as you are and may welcome the conversation.
These tips, as helpful as they are, are not hard and fast rules of travelling; they vary depending on the type of person you are, and of course if you are travelling alone or with others. However, they do come in handy whether you are a frequent flyer or a first time flyer.
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